Saturday, September 11, 2010

The '90s (Albums)

As I end my reflection of the 1990s with my list of favorite albums from the decade it becomes increasingly apparent just how important records were and how much the music industry really changed in that time. It was MTV's first and last full decade of influence. By the end of the '90s the channel had drastically decreased the amount of videos played and reality television was beginning to dominate their programming. Print publications were about to lose their game to online zines and the CD itself was soon to become a thing of the past. 1999 saw the launch of Napster and music would never be the same again. Major labels would soon be crashing as would the idea of an album. In the decade that followed, physical releases were of no importance, release dates turned into leaks, and soon people would only obtain select songs by their favorite artists, something they were previously only able to do with singles. Once again this is a list of how I remember the music from the decade, but unlike the songs I listed earlier, there is an importance to each of these records. I vividly remember the day my parents bought a CD player and countless CDs in the early half of the decade just as clearly as the day my dad helped me download Napster. So not only is this list important because these albums can each hold their own against any other best list from any other decade, but these albums also matter because they were the last of a soon to be dying breed.

50. Squarepusher | Music Is Rotted One Note
49. Sebadoh | Bakesale
48. Björk | Post
47. Foo Fighters | Colour and the Shape
46. GZA/Genius | Liquid Swords
45. Codeine | Frigid Stars
44. Pale Saints | The Comforts of Madness
43. Aphex Twin | Richard D. James Album
42. Afghan Whigs | Gentlemen
41. Spiritualized | Ladies and Gentlemen We Are Now Floating In Space

40. A Tribe Called Quest | Midnight Marauders
39. Nine Inch Nails | The Downward Spiral
38. Wu-Tang Clan | Enter the Wu-Tang [36 Chambers]
37. Pulp | Different Class
36. Save the Day | Through Being Cool
35. Stereolab | Emperor Tomato Ketchup
34. The Cocteau Twins | Heaven or Las Vegas
33. R.E.M. | Automatic for the People
32. Sonic Youth | Goo
31. Silver Jews | American Water

30. The Get Up Kids | Something to Write Home About
29. Mogwai | Young Team
28. Smashing Pumpkins | Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness
27. Fiona Apple | When the Pawn...
26. Rodan | Rusty
25. Weezer | Pinkerton
24. Rage Against the Machine | Rage Against the Machine
23. American Football | American Football
22. Slowdive | Souvlaki
21. Pixies | Bossanova

20. Ride | Nowhere
19. Godspeed You! Black Emperor | F#A#∞
18. Pavement | Crooked Rain Crooked Rain
17. Radiohead | The Bends
16. Refused | The Shape of Punk to Come
15. Slint | Spiderland
14. Digable Planets | Blowout Comb
13. Boards of Canada | Music Has the Right to Children
12. Beck | Odelay
11. Nirvana | Nevermind

10. OutKast | Aquemini
09. Modest Mouse | Lonesome Crowded West
08. Green Day | Dookie
07. Elliott Smith | Either/Or
06. Weezer | Weezer
05. Nirvana | In Utero
04. Portishead | Dummy
03. My Bloody Valentine | Loveless
02. Neutral Milk Hotel | In the Aeroplane Over the Sea
01. Radiohead | OK Computer

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